Close
 

What it’s like to show at New Zealand Fashion Week as a SME

  • Design
  • September 4, 2017
  • Sarah Dunn
What it’s like to show at New Zealand Fashion Week as a SME

Start-up entrepreneurs talk about setting a BHAG – Big Hairy Audacious Goal – to inspire and guide their businesses’ development. For a small apparel business, it doesn’t get much bigger, hairier or more audacious than showing at New Zealand Fashion Week, but the new Trade Space has allowed Christchurch-based ecommerce retailer Issue Clothing Co. to do just that.

Issue Clothing Co. launched in April 2016 when Hannah Burnard and Robyn Pelvin left their backgrounds in retail, marketing and ecommerce; and banking and finance, respectively, to found a workwear label. They’re aiming to recreate the kind of bundled ecommerce experience offered overseas by retailers like Trunk Club, but with an emphasis on classic, unfussy design.

The company is now about to launch its fifth capsule collection. They usually include a top, trousers, a skirt, a dress and a blazer, and sell for $995. All items are made in New Zealand.

Issue Clothing Co. is currently selling well online, and has one stockist, Christchurch boutique The Collective. It’s also had success with a series of pop-up stores in Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin and Wellington, but New Zealand Fashion Week has been a chance for the company to make contact with a wide range of buyers and representatives. Burnard and Pelvin’s aim is to secure more stockists.

The company booked a booth for two days at NZFW’s ‘Trade Space’, which was launched for the first time this year. The space is on-site business-focused area within NZFW’s venue, the ANZ Viaduct Events Centre. Reserving an area in this restricted-access space means brands can have a presence at NZFW without the hassle of putting on a runway show or presentation.

Burnard and Pelvin looked at putting on a runway show, but it wasn’t the right fit for Issue Clothing Co.’s simple offering.

 “You don’t really want to see a white shirt go down the runway,” Pelvin says.

Having a booth allows delegates to inspect the clothing more closely. Issue Clothing Co.’s emphasis on classic design means the quality of its fabrics is of elevated importance, and having the products available will lead to higher buyer engagement.

“New Zealanders love to touch and feel,” says Burnard.

To show their clothing in the booth, Issue Clothing Co. had to catch up to the buying cycle, which meant “half a season’s worth of work in two months” for Burnard and Pelvin.

They don’t regret going direct-to-consumer before pursuing stockists, however. This model has meant they’ve developed a direct relationship with customers at an early stage of the business, giving them the ability to gather customer feedback and adjust their offering accordingly.

If they’d agreed to stock any retailers before going through this process of refinement and change, Burnard says, Issue Clothing Co. may have become “locked into” supplying certain styles without the opportunity to act on customer feedback.

The next step after securing more stockists is to take a leap and open a store. The proliferation of new commercial buildings opening in Christchurch means Burnard and Pelvin are spoiled for choice, and the soon-to-open corporate buildings will mean more professional women spending time in the central city.

“There will be a concentration of our core customer,” says Burnard. “All the law firms and all the major accounting firms will be in a 2km radius, basically.”

​ ​

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.

 

Mergers: Making it work

  • News
  • August 17, 2019
  • Jai Breitnauer
Mergers: Making it work

We took an in-depth look at recent retail mergers. Jai Breitnauer compiled all the advice from the feature into this handy guide on how to get one right.

Read more
 
 

Mergers: What about the staff?

  • News
  • August 16, 2019
  • Jai Breitnauer
Mergers: What about the staff?

As part of a recent look at retail mergers, Jai Breitnauer considers their effect on staff.

Read more
 
 

Walk Ethical: The new way to commit to providing a better workplace

  • Sponsored content
  • August 15, 2019
  • Sponsored content
Walk Ethical: The new way to commit to providing a better workplace

Colmar Brunton recently reported that over 90 percent of Kiwi consumers would stop buying goods and services from businesses found to be unethical. Walk Ethical is the new accreditation available for business to show they’re dedicated to ethical standards in the workplace.

Read more
 

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

 
topics
Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Regional rollercoaster
What does retail look like in 2019 for ...
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Sisterhood
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...
 
News

Are you on The Retail Hotlist 2019?

Join us in celebrating the vitality and innovation of New Zealand’s retail sector by voting for The Retail Hotlist. The NZ Retail team and Gem, ...

 
 

A Kiwi working abroad at Amazon and Microsoft talks Amazon Go

  • Technology
  • August 15, 2019
  • Idealog
A Kiwi working abroad at Amazon and Microsoft talks Amazon Go

Businesses across the board are now laser focused on how to create the best possible customer experience, but how do companies big and small ensure they’re placing people first? At the CX Conference 2019, Microsoft global industry marketing director of retail and consumer goods Catherine Brands shared her unique New Zealand insights from working at Amazon and Microsoft, including what it was like to be one of the founding team members to launch Amazon Go.

Read more
 

Inside Allbirds' first New Zealand store

  • Design
  • August 15, 2019
  • Lara Wyatt
Inside Allbirds' first New Zealand store

Founded by New Zealander Tim Brown, sustainable sneaker company Allbirds went ahead and conquered the US market before opening on home territory. The first Kiwi Allbirds store launched in Auckland's Britomart today. The Register's sister publication Good was there to check it out.

Read more
 
Next page
Results for
Topics
Jobs
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

Advertise
The Register

editor@theregister.co.nz

Content marketing/advertising? Email anita.hayhoe@icg.co.nz or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit

}